How to Be Sharp About Selecting Kitchen Knives
Selecting knives for a kitchen is very important. There is a lot to consider when picking out knives for a kitchen. There are a lot of types, designs, quality of knives, sharpness, thickness of blade, and the cost of the knife as well. For the novice shopper, it helps to know what exactly a kitchen knife is.
- Definition of a Kitchen Knife
- Types of Kitchen Knives
- Specialized Kitchen Knives
- Best Chef’s Knives
- Japanese Kitchen Knives
- Kitchen Knife Sets
- Ceramic Knives
- Selecting Good Quality Kitchen Knives
- Professional Chef’s Knives
- Steak Knives
Definition of Kitchen Knife
A kitchen knife is any knife that is made to be used to prepare food. Most kitchen’s can make do with a few standard knives like a large chef’s knife, a tough cleaver, and a small paring knife. However, there are many specialized knives that have special jobs in a kitchen. Kitchen knives are also made from many different kinds of materials. It is also essential to know what types of kitchen knives there are when looking for them.
Types of Kitchen Knives
–Kitchen knives come in many types: chef’s knife, paring knife, boning knife, serrated or bread knife, utility knife, cleaver knife, fillet knife, frozen food knife, and a mincing knife. Among the many knives in a kitchen, the chef’s knife will always be one of the most very important ones with its main design being for cooking. Kitchen knives that are six inches long are called miniature chef’s knives. If they are longer than that, they are called the traditional chef’s knives.
–A paring knife typically comes in 2 ½-4 inches when it comes to how long they are and it is absolutely one of the most used knives in every set of knives. It is a good knife to use for coring and peeling fruits and vegetables and cutting and slicing little items including non-food items as well as other important tasks. They are also good for mincing, especially mincing garlic and little peppers.
Boning knives are a thin and short bladed knife that is typically about five to six inches in length. Similar to other knives in the kitchen, they have a specific task. They are made for taking the bones out of fish and poultry. Since they are very flexible, they can get in between the small spaces that are between bones. It is essential to keep these knives sharp in order for them to do their job right.
Bread knives usually come with a serrated edge. Experts says this is a good idea because it provides additional control and this edge helps the knife last a long time. They are typically about five inches long. With their sawing motion, they can cut into a loaf of bread without destroying it.
Utility knives either have a serrated or straight edge. It is not as long as a chef’s knife, but, at five to seven inches long, it is longer than the usual serrated knife. It is also called a sandwich knife because it does a good job of slicing blocks of cheese and meat. They can cut through almost any item a paring knife can like cucumbers, large apples, and small squashes. It can also cut through garlic, herbs, and shallots that come from a garden.
Cleaver knives have a large blade with a unique rigidity. They are about six to seven inches in length and they have a cutting edge with fine sharpness. Since it comes from the word cleave, it functions in a hack and slash manner. When it is in use, people will realize that it is heavier than other knives. Since it has a blade that is shaped like a rectangle, it can not only cut meat, it can cut bones with heavy and stiff strokes. A huge benefit of this knife is that it does not require a lot of maintenance. After it is sharpened, it will stay sharp for a long time. There are also specialized knives for use in the kitchen.
Specialized Kitchen Knives
Fillet knives are six to eleven inches long and are ideal for cutting any type of fish. The blade is narrow and protruding and is perfect for taking bones out of fish without disturbing the look of the fish.
Frozen food knives make it to where people do not have to defrost food prior to cutting it. With a coarse or saw-toothed blade, they can slice through the most difficult of frozen foods including meats, breads, legumes, fruits, and vegetables.
Mincing knives mince a lot of different varieties of foods into small pieces that are ideal for soups, seasoning sauces, salad dressings, and other food items that require small pieces of food. Mincing knives have a double or single blade. For those that are in search of a chef’s knife, there are some of them that deserve the title of Best chef knives.
Best Chef’s Knives
The professional S chef’s knife is made by Henckels and is one of their best knives. It is made from one piece of steel, has a bolster, full-tang, and a three-rivet handle. It has a little heft, but not too much that tires out a hand. Their blades come in three sizes, six-inch, eight-inch, and ten-inch. If it is honed on a regular basis, it will stay sharp.
A Wusthof Classic Ikon Seven-Inch Santoku is fully forged and has a full tang. It is easy to sharpen and has a scalloped edge that prevents food from sticking.
The Messermeister Meridian Elite Nine-Inch Kitchen Knife has a partial bolster that makes it easy to sharpen and its nine-inch size is a perfect compromise between an eight-inch and ten-inch knife.
The Global Seven-Inch Santoku has a modern design. They are cutting edge and cost-effective. They are also very lightweight with a thin and razor-sharp edge.
The Shun Classic Eight-Inch Knife Set looks great and is very sharp. Not only does it have a pretty design, but it also has a thin hard core that makes the edge. Since it is very lightweight, it is ideal for cutting through very dense food products. A lot of chefs also prefer to use Japanese kitchen knives.
Japanese kitchen knives
come in a lot of varieties. The ones that are used the most are deba bocho (fish filleting), the Santoku hocho (an all in one utility knife) the nakiri bocho beside usuba hocho (Japanese specialty vegetable knives), plus the tako hiki and we find yanagiba (sashimi slicers). There are many more kitchen knives famous in japan, and used all over the world..
Types of Japanese Kitchen Knives
There are quite a few types of kitchen knives.
The Gyuto is like a chef’sknife with a two sharpen sides.
A Maguro bocho is a very long knife that is used to slice tuna.
The Nakiri bocho is a knife used for vegetable..
Santoku means “three virtues” and it used to cut fish, meat, and vegetables and it is a very known knife with double bevel with a stylish western style..
A Soba kiri knife is a knife that is used to make buckwheat.
A Sujihiki is like a western cutting, and slicing. except it has a double bevel.
The Udon kiri is used to make Japanese wheat flour noodles.
The Unagisaki Hocho is used to cut eel.
A lot of cooks and professional chefs prefer to buy knife sets because they can get a variety of knives for one price.
Kitchen knife sets make a great addition to any kitchen. Not only do they look nice, but they also give the cook a variety of knives to use when cooking.
With all of the tools that are available on the market for cooking, none of them is as important as a good set of knives. Any chef will agree with this. Some chefs treat their knives like they do their own children. There are many good Kitchen knife sets on the market. I am going to share some of the best ones available.
Kitchen Knife Sets (Knife block sets)
The JosephJoseph Elevate Knives Carousel Set does not take up a lot of counter space and it has a magnetic base.The knives are soft-touch, have a non-slip handle, and the blades are of a high quality.
Taylors Eye Witness Dexterity Knives are brightly colored and will liven up any kitchen. They come with five knives: a chef’s knife, a bread knife, a carving knife, an all-purpose knife, and a paring knife. They are very easy to clean and they have a finger guard.
The Robert Welch Signature Block With Sharpener knives each have a honed blade and is tempered to be razor sharp with technology that was inspired by a Japanese master sword craftsmen. The block also has a magnetic locator in each slot to keep knife edges safe.
Viners Naxo knives is a very comprehensive set of knives as they come with six kitchen knives, six steak knives, and scissors. This is a one-of-the-kind set of knives since it is out of the ordinary for a set of knives to be as gleaming white as they are.
The Lakeland Fully Forged Knife Block comes with the five knives that every kitchen needs: a paring knife, a cook’s knife, an all-purpose knife, a carving knife, and a bread knife. Every one of them is made from a single piece of hardened steel. They are sufficiently heavy without being too weighty. If they are sharpened a little and on a regular basis, they will last for many years. Ceramic knife(s) (including ceramic steak knives) are a different type of knife.
Materials– Quality ceramic knives are made of strong materials, typically zirconium oxide.
Benefits– Since the material that ceramic knives are made out of is hard, the knives good looks will last a long time. They also have a razor sharp edge that does not require sharpening for years. The blade makes it easier to slice, allows for precise cuts, and very thin slices. Also, a well-designed ceramic knife will have a comfortable handle that completes a well-balanced feel and provides a safe and sure grip. These knives are also lightweight and a lot of people may like them since it makes hand fatigue less and requires less effort for certain slicing jobs. They also do not rust or leave a metallic taste on foods.
Downsides– The ceramic blades are more fragile than brittle. This means that if a ceramic knife is dropped or is used to try to cut bones or frozen foods, they can break or chip. They are also limited to slicing fruits, vegetables, and boneless meats. Ceramic knives also should not be twisted, scraped, bent, or exposed to extreme temperatures. They also cannot be stored in a knife drawer, but must be kept in a custom box or sleeve. It is also not a good idea to run them through the dishwasher.
Selecting Good Quality Kitchen Knives
There are a lot of things to look for when it comes to selecting a kitchen knife set. One thing to consider is the type of knife that the kitchen needs.
Types of Kitchen Knives– Kitchen knives come in many shapes and sizes. They also can meet a lot of different needs and what knives a person should get depends on their cooking style and habits.
Grip– The grip needs to be comfortable and fit well in the user’s hand. Since everyone’s comfort level is different, a person needs to try out the knives themselves prior to purchasing them.
Steel– The best knives are made out of a single piece of hand forged steel.
Weight– Lightweight knives are good for precision and speed. Heavy knives are perfect for chopping nuts, fresh ginger, palm sugar, and other food products that are difficult to chop.
Balance– Quality knives usually have a good balance with not too much weight in either the blade or the handle.
The Hilt of The Knife-The hilt of the knife should be solid, easy to clean, and well joined.
The Handle– The handle should be made of plastic, wood, toughened resins or other hard materials.
The Blade– The best knife blades are ceramic because it can be sharpened to be made as sharp as a scalpel, stay sharp for a long time, and they do not rust.
The Width of The Cutting Edge– Along with that, the smoothness and thickness of the blade should be considered also. The best knives are smooth as though polished with no sign of pitting in the middle.
Professional Chef’s Knives
A chef’s knife,also known as a cooking knife, is a cutting tool used when food is prepared. They were originally designed to cut beef. It is now the most used knife in the kitchen.
Size– Chef’s knives are usually eight inches long and one-and-a-half inches wide.
Tasks– The modern chef’s knife is used for mincing, slicing, chopping vegetables, slicing vegetables, and removing the joints from large pieces of meat.
Blades– A chef’s knife is made out of either carbon steel, stainless steel, laminated steel, or ceramics.
Edge– The edge of a chef’s knife may be ground in different ways: double grind, v-shape, single, or bevel on both sides, convex edge, hollow ground, or single grind or chisel edge.
There is a lot to consider when purchasing steak knives to ensure that the Best steak knives are purchased.
Appearance– A steak knife should look good. It ought to look and feel stylish and should make a person want to touch it.
Edge– Since steak knives are used on a plate and not a cutting board, the edge of the knife is very important. Straight-edged knives work well right after they are bought, but after about a dozen meals, the once razor sharp blade is about as helpful as a spoon. If a person will not sharpen them on a regular basis, then they should not buy straight-edged knives. Micro-serrated edges are only a little better than straight-edged knives. They are made cheaply and the blades do not stay sharp for long. Unlike a straight-edge, they cannot be resharpened, so, therefore, when they go dull, they can only be disposed of. Serrated knives, especially those with large serrations, are the way to go because they will continue to cut through meat with no problem even after they have been hit against a plate many times.
With all of this information, I hope you will be more sharp when it comes to selecting knives. Maybe you will even be a cut above all of the rest in your knowledge about knives.